June 1976, Stephen (drums) and Davis (keyboards) from Yorkshire formed a band called XL. The kid with the guitar, Stephen Smith, was eager to be noticed, so he become a further member and Paul was added to the equation and the band was complete. They knew five songs (covers of Beatles, Showaddywaddy) and played those over and over. After a year of solid gigging, the lads changed their name to Excel and replaced Paul with new axe man Richard. More gigs followed and they writing + performing more of their own songs. Excel founded their own label which was rare in the seventies. Founding member David leave because he was unhappy with the punky direction of the band. Alan enters the stage and in January 1979 they recorded their first 7Inch 'If It Rains' on their newly formed A.R.S.S. Records. Excel toured very much and at an amazing gig in London they sign a contract with Polydor and the second 7Inch 'What Went Wrong?' came out but it unfortunately failed to chart. Undaunted the band recorded a third 7Inch but it came to disputes within the band, arguments broke out which led to fights and it become almost impossible to continue with the recordings. Emergency meetings were held but singer/songwriter was asked to leave Excel. Hearing this, Polydor lost interest and the band were dropped at the end 1980. - The Japanese label 1977 Records, (known for re-releases of early punk/powerpop classics) released this brilliant compilation with fifteen killers, the debut + the second single and demos from their unreleased album. Enough for today, now I have to go to the Museumsuferfest, Cheers!